Tuesday, November 26, 2002

In Dreams

I was shot three times: twice in the chest and once in the head. It didn't hurt, I just resigned myself to the fact that I would die then. I didn't die though. I thought, 'This is pretty strange.' But I was worried that he might shoot me again if he saw I was still alive, so I pretended to be dead. But my patience ran out and I got up and went about my business. I didn't see him again.

Then last night I dreamt that three people were throwing rocks at me. That didn't hurt either. After some time they stopped throwing their rocks at me and came over. One was a beautiful naked girl with tattoos across her collarbone; she was smiling at me and somehow assured me that it wasn't really anything, those rocks. She moved against me and I touched her, but she giggled and pushed me away.

Wednesday, October 23, 2002


Recently a young comics dude from Tasmania sent me a couple of his comix. They looked interesting no doubt about it, but the thing was they were so damn tiny I couldn't read them: A6 (half the size of SICK PUPPY) and each page contained around 20 tiny panels. It was frustrating, I'll admit. Further, one of 'em also contained two pages of virtually microscopic writing (a good sign, this, that tells me here is another *obsessive type*), which I enlarged 200%, and thus (barely) managed to read. Anyway, I wrote to this fellow ES. James and explained the problem, as I saw it, with the size of his productions. Next thing I know he mailed me a copy of his new comic book in a special large (A4) format which I could easily read. And here I might point out that I'm not a reader of LARGE PRINT BOOKS; my eyes can see just fine. Well, I was impressed with this FENGB #6, subtitled MILKBLEEDER. Then shortly afterwards I received a copy of his CAPN'S SCHEMES reprint which was very funny, as the Capn's "schemes" invariably involve retarded, hilarious schemes to score "free handjobs" (joining the Cap'n on these quests is his young TinTin-lookalike friend). One means to this end that the Cap'n comes up with is to make a cardboard video game machine with three holes cut out on the front panel; the Capn' jumps inside and pops his cock and balls through the holes and simply waits for somebody to come up and "have a go". (A funny thing Mr James points out on his website is that after releasing these stories originally, everybody assumed he was gay). Does this sound like ridiculously juvenile humour? Well, whatever, and who cares? It's executed with skill and really very funny and I found myself reading through the entire book in one go. I'll be plugging these titles again in ATOMISER #1 and I've invited ES. James to contribute to that issue whatsmore.

Monday, September 02, 2002

Rave Slave

On Saturday night I worked at another of my brother's rave parties. It wasn't so bad, nowhere near as horrific as the one before that, but then this one there was only around 500 of the brats. The vast majority were well behaved this time, too. Maybe it had something to do with the fact I cut my hair on Saturday morning, and thus looked like somebody not to be trifled with. I will admit that I'm pretty good at cutting my own hair now. Just as long as I don't do it when I've had too many beers.
So here I am at the rave on Saturday night; it was at a go-kart track, in the parking lot thereof. Me and my glow products were right at the front entrance where the kids were coming in, it was a pretty exciting spot throughout the night because that's where the security guys were. Right next to me I watched two kids get searched for drugs; one was a boy who was obviously speeding hard, he was flipping and flopping like a rubber man, jaws working a million miles an hour, tongue flicking out like a lizard. They didn't find any drugs on him so he was let go. Then a girl was searched, they didn't find any drugs on her either. The security honchos looked crestfallen.
In another action-packed scene: the security guys went flying past me and out the front gate, yapping excitedly into their headsets. Apparently some kid had left without taking his wristband off. See, it wasn't exciting after all, but the way the security guys were acting, you would have thought it was something to do with a bomb, or a high powered assault rifle.
Another comical incident was when one of the security dudes dragged a kid out and ejected him from the venue. He told us what happened: he was walking around the dance area and right next to him one kid said "Aw man how did you get in?" and the other kid proudly exclaimed: "I snuck in! Huh huh!!!" so the security guy goes: "Clever boy!" and grabs him and takes him out. That kid visibly regretted his loud mouth.
Meanwhile, I was sitting on a plastic chair selling glo-sticks to all and sundry. Those things are popular, kid. But not all those little brats are happy to pay $5.00 each for 'em, they make that quite clear. "Aw, five bucks?!", they ask me, wringing their hands and looking about to burst into tears. I admit to them that I find it hard to empathise when they have surely blown a coupla hundred bucks on Ecstasy already. The poor darlings. Blub!
Something else that made the night much more tolerable was when at 2:30am my dear brother (the Rave King) tells me to pack up, we're outta there! Hallelujah!
Another thing that made it a good night was that this place was in a quiet industrial area. At every one of these things going to the toilets for me is pure hell because you know, these kids piss all over the floor, there's about a million of them in the bathroom, and they are very loud, and there will be two of them in a cubicle with their drug bags. Man, I was there once, but I'm an old bastard now at 34 years, and a man wants to piss in peace. So this time I just walked out the gate, up the street a ways and found, to my Great Joy, an empty block, quiet and dark. I had a truly Glorious piss in that empty block, my friends. It was a true highlight of the evening.
And now I don't work at another rave party until November. Amen.

Tuesday, August 13, 2002


I've been wondering how to explain this without it sounding absurd - to get it down with the true weight and wonder of it.
Saturday August 3 was a new experience in misery. So sick, so awesomely ill. Bugs under the skin, mudslides every half hour. Objects around me so impossibly bright they terrified me. It felt like my skin had been torn away and I was pure raw nerves. I walked over to Andre's place and the crowds on the street were almost too much. Icy sweat poured off me and I somehow managed to stumble along in sick terror of everything. I got to Andre's place and he was horrified by my visage. I looked like a dead man, barely animated, grey slimy skin - a ghost in the middle of the day. I managed to eat a cracker and a small piece of cheese, then I had to leave. I hauled myself back home and when I got there I marvelled at the fact that I did it, and didn't collapse in the street. Saturday night I was in bed at 7:30pm with my sheets smelling foul from the oceans of sweat that came out of me. One minute freezing, the next burning. Why couldn't I just die and be done with it?
I woke ridiculously early on Sunday morning and couldn't get back to sleep. HA! The nightmare continues. Rolling around my bed in miserable endless torture I turned the radio on. I had to get my mind off my woeful state. Every station I hit only seemed to add to my plight. Horrible noise, dumb lyrics. Then I hit a station where a man was talking about God and Jesus Christ. I listened. I found myself thinking hard about my situation, how ashamed I felt because of the point I had reached with the drugs. I meditated at length. I had been doing my best to fuck myself up good and proper, that's for sure.
Then some music came on and it seemed to ease the pain I was feeling. I found my Holy Bible and flipped it open randomly. It was the Psalms. Soon I found this one:
Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. Se-lah.
- Psalm 4:4

It struck me like a lightningbolt. I realised with absolute clarity how I'd been destroying myself. I felt in awe of the words the preacher was saying, and those words from the Bible, in that Psalm. I communed with my heart on my sick bed, and was still. I became still because the pain disappeared. The great and relentless agony ended.
I got up from my bed, feeling better than I could ever remember feeling.

Friday, August 09, 2002

Crash: Part Three

Tuesday, July 30, 2002 11:16pm -- First thing this morning I managed a shit - no battle this time but still it was painful.
My dear, great brother "loaned" me $50 today because of my tenuous financial position. He even dropped it off at my work. I don't deserve such a brother.
Of course, I fucked up my plan: I had the 8ml tonight when I got home (after quite a sick day at work) but that did so little I thought What's the damn point of these tiny, teasing amounts when there's still more? If you can't at least lose the sickness what's the point? Either you do it properly or not at all. Do enough to get you high and when it's gone, it's gone. Deal with it.
I'm scared.

Wednesday, July 31, 2002 midnight -- Mikel just left, we finished watching American History X.
Finished the morphine tonight. It gets ugly after this, I'm really not looking forward to it, that's for damn sure. It's gonna be HELL.
I'll make sure to savour falling asleep now, feeling good for the last time in days.

Thursday, August 08, 2002

Crash: Part Two

Tuesday, July 23, 2002 11:11pm -- Another day at work without the boss. managed to get a lot done. Printed 10 more SP#8s - this huge bloody back issue operation to put these SP#1-13 packs together that Polyester Paul originally asked me for. Of course it's a good idea, so I'm also letting everybody know that they're available to buy from me. At $40 for each one it's no chump change, bud.
So when I got home tonight there's a nother night of collating, folding and stapling.
Hit the Brown Bottle again, also this morning. It's on my mind a great part of the day - wondering how to make it last until Mark gets back; if I should really try to get the Hell off it... I also spend a lot of time brooding over my Goddamn teeth situation. I cancelled the appointment last Thursday, happily justifying it since I bought my radio, and wouldn't have enough money for the dentist. So now I'm going a week from Thursday. Of course, the time will fly and before I know it, that day will come. Goddamn teeth.
Oh, also today at work i made the invitations for ATOMISER #1, with the *Ancient* theme. Sent my Australian contributors one; tomorrow I'll send them to my International contributors.

Thursday, July 25, 2002 9:29pm -- I've been full of rage lately - it's either the downers, quitting Zoloft, or both. Sooner or later I've really gotta quit the damn morphine and STAY QUIT. Then see how my damn brain performs then.
It's been bloody great with M. on holidays - I've managed to get heaps of comix and other personal stuff done. Yesterday I printed more back issues. Only another day and they're all done.
A great proportion of my internet time lately is spent writing for my own blog Atomiser, and checking out other folks' blogs. The best one I've come across is BRING THE HATE by a young (18, 19, 20?) Asian dude Gordon Cheng. He's smart and full of bile. Calls everybody "fag" - his writing makes me laugh. He's good, not boring, which the majority of these damn blogs are. Fuck them - there's so many. See, that's why shit like 'links' and recommendations are so important. When you find somebody who has "got it" and knows their shit, then you can be almost sure that whatever they recommend is gonna be to your taste, too.
Good old Kapreles started his own blog after he checked mine out. And I've got good old laurie Adams at work to thank (he originally asked me if I had one).
The days whizzing by makes my head spin; it's already Thursday. You get older, time goes by faster. No time to waste fucking around, that's why I've gotta push myself like a bastard. I'm naturally a lazy motherfucker so i have to force myself to work. I'm so weak. So fucking undisciplined.
That thing I mentioned about these rages: I get them at work and had it today so bad I wrote about it in my blog. Small things make me so mad I shake and profanity pours outta my mouth like a torrent. Not good. Or is it? Sometimes it DOES feel good to HATE.

Saturday, July 27, 2002 11:57pm -- I went through the entire day without speaking to anybody. Well, I did go to the supermarket and said "Hi" to the checkout girl. And I went to the pub and asked for two bottles of beer. And tonight the phone rang but I didn't answer it. Whoever rang refused to leave a message. I suspect it was Nita. That has happened at least twice the past week.
I was happy to not talk to or see anybody. A day just by myself is so rare.
So what did I do? I read stuff all day: newspapers I found in the recycling bin and Celine's Death on the Installment Plan. Ate lots of smarties. Baked beans on toast. Ham and cheese sandwich with mustard, pepper and salt. Cigarettes. Beer later on. Also listened to the radio. My new radio is great great great. I feel like a kid with a new toy; one of the best ones I'll ever have.

Sunday, July 28, 2002 6:00pm -- What the FUCK are these idiots doing around here?! HUH?! These FUCKHEADS next door are going IN THE FUCK AND OUT, SLAMMING THEIR MOTHERFUCKING DOORS EVERY GODDAMN FIVE MINUTES! I don't understand what posible reason there could be for this NON-STOP IN & OUT SHIT. FUCKING MORONS CAN'T MAKE UP THEIR SIMPLE GODDAMN MINDS WHETHER THEY WANT TO BE INSIDE OR FRIGGIN' OUTSIDE. IT IS SOOO FUUUUUCKING IRRITATING!! It's making me so mad I wanna go and YELL in their STUPID FACES: "WHAT THE FUUUUUCK ARE YOU DOING, IDIOTS?!"

8:13pm -- The next week and beyond is gonna be very interesting. See, I've only got 44ml of my magic potion left and Mark doesn't return for another week and a half, which means during the next week, no matter how I ration the potion out (and I am hopeless at doing that) there's gonna be one Helluva crash coming up. I will be sure to report all the gory details right here.
Ideally I would like to keep half of it for Thursday when I have to go to the dentist; and the other half for next Saturday which is Cath's birthday party. So if I manage to discipline myself to not have any until Thursday, I'm gonna start getting quite sick around Tuesday. Alternatively, I could ration it in smaller and smaller doses, which is probably a better idea. I think I'll try it that way. Mon: 12ml; Tues: 10ml; Wed: 8ml; Thurs: 8ml; Fri: 4ml; Sat: 2ml. Finished.
Stay tuned for progress reports.

Monday, July 29, 2002 10:37am -- Jesus H Christ this morning i had the most FEROCIOUS battle with a Moby Dick turd. i was sweating and pushing for all I was worth just like a woman in labour. Of course, it's all because of the m-potion. This is pretty disgusting, but it got so fuckin; desperate at one stage I put my hand down there and attempted to pull the bastard out. It felt like a chocolate crackle.
In a horrifying realisation, i recalled a passage in a book I read recently (Hamsun's *Hunger*, I think) where a woman lubricates her anus to make the shit come out cos she's so constipated - so I did it with soapy water. I really think it helped.

10:55pm -- Yes, the day is almost over buit still I say the most noteworthy event was my battle this morning trying to get that humungous fucking turd OUT of my body. I'm not exagerating when I use the word "battle", either - it was just like a very violent, exhausting fight with this damn turd that seemed to be trying to exit sideways. I was cursing at it; sweating, worried about a heart attack but really determined to get rid of this massive passenger I would no longer put up with.
Enough about THAT!!
In other news: tonight i had only 10ml of the magic potion. I feel OK. Tomorrow night: 8ml.
I really want to see BULLY tomorrow night, but of course money is supertight as it is just before payday. I'm expecting all this money to come in from people buying my comix but those bastards take their time. "Yes, I will send the money this week!" Sure you will... Of course, it's my own damn fault - I blew $200 last payday on this shit that makes it almost impossible to shit. Well, I'll see if I get this money I'm expecting in the mail tomorrow and decide then. See, another concern I have is that I fear that this film could be banned and pulled from cinemas any day. I wanna see it as SOON as I can. And $9.00!! I'm having problems over $9.00! What a poor bastard I am!

Wednesday, August 07, 2002

Crash: Part One

I had a wicked bad crash recently, which is why I haven't written anything much here lately. I came down hard from these damn drugs I've been pumping into my body, and it was ugly. What follows is the lead up to this carnage direct from my journal. I offer it to my readers that they may get some benefit from this tale of foolishness and misery, even if it is just as entertainment; to be amused by another's suffering or idiocy. That's OK, that has been some of the most enjoyable writing to me, too (Bukowski, Celine, Hamsun). The 'action' starts middle of July 2002 and wraps up August 4, 2002:

Sunday, July 14, 2002 -- The goddamn little flight steward fag came down, rapping at my door, again tonight, while Mikel was here. We were only watching TV and he said the BASS was too loud. I said: "fer Crying out loud, I've just got the damn TV on!" Then he mentioned something about my noise at 5:00am the other day, and that really did it. I told him I am NEVER even awake at 5:00am any goddamn morning; it must have been the asshole downstairs. He pulled this SUPREMELY irritating face, with the stupid little smiling, shaking his fool head, like, of COURSE he knows I'm lying, but HE understands. That really burnt me up, so to speak, so I let him have it. Just to make him go away I said I would turn the goddamn bass down, and he went. Then I realised that it's HIM who must be the one upstairs who is always dropping friggin MARBLES or whatever the hell on his polished wood floor, there upstairs. So next time I hear ONE MARBLE hit his damn floor, I'm gonna go right up and tell him how much his marble-dropping drives me BANANAS.
(First, I should make sure that HE is the one who lives upstairs.)

Monday, July 15, 2002 10:46pm -- Wrote a report on Saturday night, working on the goddamn glostix stall at Utopia. I'm happy with it; I think I nailed the acute disgust I felt with the worst of these little rave jerks and jerkettes. Saturday was a new low. As I wrote in the report, after this last one, i really had to ask myself if going through all that is worth the money. I guess a week later it is. And I just concentrate on the fact that $100 of it is going on my Tivoli Audio Model One. The other $100 of course going on a brown bottle [morphine].

Tuesday, July 16, 2002 10:34pm -- An uneventful day. The only things I can think of writing about are comix-related business: Paul at PolyEster requested more copies of SP#13 (plus back issues, but he won't get those anytime soon because it's such a massive, daunting operation). The J Man and Steve Rehberger both wrote with praise for my Glostix story. Of course that made me proud indeed!

Wednesday, July 17, 2002 11:00pm -- Today somebody else told me how much they enjoyed my Glostix story. This person was Adam Ford - another writer. So along with The J Man praising my story, it means a lot to me. The problem now is that I want to produce something else, that is at least as good. WAAAAA! How do I do it? How the HELL do i do it, huh? What do I write about? Well, that's the main thing (or at least one of the real important things) on my mind right now.
In other HUGE news I got a call at work from Hi-Fi Junction and my Model One radio is in already - I'm picking it up tomorrow. I am so damn excited about this!

Sunday, July 21, 2002 11:45pm -- See! I knew it wouldn't be too long until I missed a day or two in this bastard. Well, I have something to say in my defense! I have also been writing stuff for my new website! Not good enough! No excuse is good enough. Excuses are pathetic. I lack discipline and that's all that can be said. And I shouldn't even beat myself up about it like this - I'm writing this shit, and WHAT have i written about?! I've written about how I haven't written about anything - how completely retarded and useless is that?
Man, I'm tired, and just wanna go to bed. I hope I will write something interesting tomorrow.

Monday, July 22, 2002 10:51pm -- King Brown Bottle is gonna be away for three weeks. Before he left I got two bottles off him (that was Thursday last) and already one is almost gone.
I am the King of justifying this and that.
Today at work it was just me and E. - M. is on 2 week holiday in New Zealand. Needless to say I got a lot done at work, on My GREAT WORK. Also, some high pressure occurred with my friend from way back Steve, over my comments on children (the little brats in my neighbourhood) - he fired back, I took it too seriously (apparently) and he got all defensive about his role as a parent; going on and on about how it doesn't cramp his style. I guess I touched a nerve. I think HE was the one who took things too seriously.

Wednesday, July 31, 2002

One Day Very Soon I Will Watch The Movie 'Bully'

As I continue fantasising about seeing Larry Clark's new film BULLY, here is a very funny little piece of criticism I found, written by some dumb retard. I like the breathless, zero punctuation style. And I thought Burroughs and Kerouac were radical!

* [one star (out of five)] HORRIBLE, July 11, 2002
Reviewer: A reader from Cooper City, Florida
This book was horrible as was the movie it was disgusting and POORLY depicts the kids of the area as sex addicted drug addicts. I live in the area where this happened and actually went to the set while they were filming the movie and watched a little of it but when i finally saw the movie i was disgusted in the opening scene the girls are seen half naked walking into a supermarket a winn dixie which is around the corner from my house in the embassy lakes shopping center i live in embassy lakes its HORRIBLE and i was sick just watching it depict us a little more humanly and not stupidly...

Tuesday, July 30, 2002

Constipation Horror

well goddamn fuck it - I haven't got enough goddamn money to go and see BULLY tonight. I'll have to see it on Thursday when I get paid.

If you have a weak stomach, do NOT read the following:

Jesus H Christ, this morning I had the most FEROCIOUS battle with a MOBY DICK turd. I was sweating and pushing for all I was worth, just like a woman in labour. Of course, it's all because of the M-potion.
This is pretty disgusting, but will illustrate how desperate I was: it got so desperate at one stage that when I finally got the bastard part way out, I put my hand down there and tried to manually pull it out, because it seemed to have stopped its progress. It felt like a chocolate crackle. In a horrifying realisation, I recalled a passage in a book I read recently (Hamsun's HUNGER, I think) where a woman admits she sometimes has to lubricate her anus to make the shit come out, she is so constipated. So in desperation I tried that myself with all I had at hand: soapy water. It definitely helped. (Make a note of that advice, dear readers!)
[Later...] OK, the day is almost over but still the most noteworthy event was my battle this morning trying to get that humongous turd OUT of my body. I'm not exaggerating when I use the term "battle", either - it was just like a violent, exhausting fight with this damn turd that seemed to be trying to exit SIDEWAYS. I was CURSING at it, sweating, worried about a heart attack but really determined to be rid of this massive passenger I would no longer put up with. Finally out it came. What a relief! I went over and looked at my face in the mirror - I looked like I had really been through hell.

Friday, July 26, 2002


INCEPTION: What was your reason for producing Sick Puppy Comix, which first saw print back in 1996?

At that time I had just discovered minicomics, and they were locally produced. The idea of self publishing overwhelmed me, I couldn’t sleep at night thinking about this concept. Why hadn’t I thought of this sooner? I knew I had to make my own publication. Since my intent was to collect and present other folks’ comix that I really liked, rather than solely my own primitive drawings, I decided to make an anthology.

As SICK PUPPY evolved over the years, did your reasons for publishing it evolve along with it, or did you stay true to your initial ideals?

It’s evolved I’d say. One thing that became very obvious was that I had discovered that I was actually quite good at this – making SICK PUPPY matched my abilities and it was something I actually enjoyed, it didn’t feel at all like work.

Another good reason to continue publishing was that there was so little exposure for comix in this country, it struck me that in this case, one person COULD make a difference (as corny as that sounds).

Considering the content in the comic offended people, did you find it hard to distribute, and get into shops?

A couple of times. Like once when I was in Perth and I rolled up at a shop that I had been assured was “cool”. The guy I showed it to just about flipped his wig. He wanted no part of it.
But mostly it’s OK because I only take it to the kind of stores who deal in that kind of underground stuff, a fine example being Paul Elliott’s PolyEster Books in Melbourne. Paul has been great, he’s supported SICK PUPPY for a long time with such solid commitment that he sells more copies than all other stores put together.

Over the years you’ve had many people inform you of their dissatisfaction with all, or part of the content. Not just by readers, but even by regular contributors. Some fair, others clearly reading the story/article wrong. How do you handle it, and did you fear that some of these people may publicly have point a finger at you at that time?

How do I handle negative feedback? I welcome it. I actually enjoy having to defend SICK PUPPY, I’ve become pretty good at it by now, that’s for sure. The biggest surprise I admit was related to what you mentioned – about contributors offended by something, and that was Mannheim’s columns, and the person who was offended was an icon of the underground comix scene in Australia, I would say, so I was definitely surprised at the reaction. And because I respected this person so much, I felt I really had to justify my decision to run Mannheim’s columns. I certainly never felt guilty or in the wrong, though. I think it comes down to black humour – sometimes it may just be too much for some folks, but ultimately it’s just humour. I have no problem with the fact that SICK PUPPY is not for everybody, my main concern was focussing on making it for the people who I knew WOULD enjoy it.

In the final issue of SP [#13], you published a letter by Ivan Brunetti, who said it was time you, and everyone else stopped producing works of a juvenile, and pathetic nature. It seemed very self-righteous that he was happy to submit stories when he was interested in explicit confronting humour. Yet as soon as he decides he’s “over it” he tells everyone to “grow the fuck up.” What’s the reaction been from that so far?
Most people seem to think it’s a bit rich coming from him. And apparently he’s still doing stuff like that anyway. Still, I can see what he’s trying to say, I feel the same way after doing SICK PUPPY for 13 issues. The problem is it’s very tricky to put this into words. It’s like for me, I am pretty damn sick of the word “sick”. People constantly saying “Aw man I gotta come up with something SICK enough for SICK PUPPY!” When I hear that I think: “Good grief what have I created here? I’ve created a monster!” I’ll admit that I encouraged it to begin with so I’ve nobody to blame but myself. Nevertheless, suddenly it seemed so stale and predictable. So it’s natural to demand something more, you just have to watch how you put it otherwise you could come across like the big been-there-done-that know-it-all like Brunetti is in danger of representing with that letter.

Perhaps one of the best letters summing up SP was also seen in #13. Chris Mikul mentioned that when SPC first came out it was a liberating experience for many contributors, yet in time he, and I guess others struggled to produce comics that were sick enough for your anthology. Were you aware of this, and how did you feel about it?
Yeah I was aware of it alright, but by then it was too late. For many people that’s what a SICK PUPPY contribution demanded – that kind of ‘oneupmanship’ in terms of ‘sickness’. What can you do? Nothing, that’s what. Nothing could be done about that problem.

Was there any story/article that you look back upon now and regret printing due to the confronting content it had? Or are you happy to say you never once stepped over the line I assume you drew for yourself as an editor.
There’s only one strip I regret putting in there, but that’s because it’s so lame. (I won’t say who it’s by, only that it’s in SP#7)

The myth is that women like to hang around bad boys. Did SP prove that to be true or false? I read in the Dr James King interview that friends of one of your ex-girlfriends tried to convince her to stop dating you. I was shocked to read that.

Well, I sure don’t have any groupies. Then again, that could have something to do with the fact that we’re talking comix here.

Yes it’s true that with my girlfriend Kathy, some of her friends were very concerned for her welfare when they found out she was going out with “the guy who does that SICK PUPPY COMIX”. She assured them that I was a very nice boy, yet they would hear nothing of the sort. “No no no! Just look at the comic he does!” They were quite horrified and convinced she was in real danger.

During your time on the comic, did you receive any weird gifts, or letters that made you laugh, freak you out?

I haven’t really received any “weird gifts”, but naturally I do receive some pretty weird zines. One of the more noteworthy of those would have to be The Necroerotic – a newsletter devoted to love/lust of dead folks.

I get the occasional weird letter. Not so long ago I got a letter from a guy telling me how much he enjoyed masturbating over a recent issue. I’m not interested in hearing about stuff like this.

The letters that made me laugh the most, and surely my favourite letters of feedback ever, are the ones from the two ex-girlfriends – reprinted in SP#12 and SP13.

Now that it’s over, do you think SP was a success for you, and where does it stand in the history of Australian comics?

I’d say it definitely was a success for me since publishing SICK PUPPY was where I learnt how to put a comix publication together. You only have to look at SP#1 to see how little of an idea I had to begin with. And it shows what can be done. I’m proud as hell of how far SICK PUPPY has come.

Where does it stand in the history of Australian comics?

I don’t think that’s for me to say. I’m nowhere even near being any kind of authority on the history of Australian comics.

Your new project is called ATOMISER. You’ve hinted that it will be more zine-based, but still contain comics. With the infamous Mannheim Jerkoff who was a regular with SP confirmed for Atomiser, does this mean we will expect similar themes in your new series?

Actually, ATOMISER will still be mostly comix. I think what you’re referring to about the zine thing is that I’m interested in picking up another columnist to join Mannheim Jerkoff and The J Man.

As far as Mannheim is concerned, I think we will see him branch out in new directions from his previous porn themes, although that is not to say that he will finish with his porn-related themes.

What is your main objective with Atomiser, be it personal, professional, or both?

My main objective with ATOMISER will be to make the kind of publication that has the following effect on our readers: they could not possibly imagine a world without ATOMISER in it, and if ever such a day did come it would be beyond sadness. Utter despair. But that is not even a possibility, because even if I were to, say, die prematurely, it would be OK because there would be somebody chosen to step directly into the role as editor and publisher.

Some people are aware of other titles you threw around before selecting Atomiser as the new publication’s name. What made Atomiser your final choice?

I get my best ideas very late at night. After trying so hard for weeks and weeks to come up with a name for the new publication, I was so frustrated I gave up. Some days later, real late one night when I couldn’t sleep, the word ATOMISER appeared in my head. One minute it wasn’t there, the next it was. I instantly knew that was the name I had to use.

Will Atomiser be your publishing project alone, or do you plan on bringing in others to help edit, compile, finance it?

If somebody was prepared to help fund the production and promotion of it, I would certainly be happy to explore that possibility. As far as creative decisions, I wouldn’t dare let anybody else near it.

SP had contributors from around the world, which is rare in local comics. Will this continue with Atomiser?

Yes, definitely. It’s a good thing because overseas contributors show it around to their friends, so a whole load of people internationally get to see what Australian comix folk are doing, what their stuff is like. I’ve had people from overseas admit they had never known there was such a “vibrant” comics scene here.

Will there be an Atomiser web site, I assume that SP web site will go off-line?

Yes, I will soon get around to building an ATOMISER website. The SICK PUPPY site will remain online indefinitely. [actually for some reason I have yet to solve, the site is down]

Are you seeking submissions, or have you already worked out who will be involved?

Yep, always seeking submissions from new folks as well as folks who may have submitted something that ended up not being included.

Finally what will be the one important difference between SP, and Atomiser.

Probably that when I started SICK PUPPY I had very little idea – it was really a case of beginning a creative project with absolutely no knowledge of how to go about it, so I had to learn everything along the way. ATOMISER will emerge with 6 years of experience (putting a comix anthology together) behind it.

ATOMISER will be sharp as a tack from the get go!

Monday, July 22, 2002

Brats Removed, Peace Restored

I'm so happy to report that the horrible little monsters (see below) who have been making my life such a goddam misery lately have been collected by their *owners*. It seems they had been staying with Grandmaw and Grandpaw, and boy did this poor old couple look relieved to be getting rid of the two screaming horrors.
I really felt strong sympathy for this elderly unit, as I noticed the tension visibly melt from their faces as the station wagon drove away. They could finally relax after what must have been an entire week of almost unbearable torment.
It's not so easy for old folks, I guess. When you're young and strong, troublesome kids are easily dealt with by, for example, gagging and binding and leaving in the basement for days (with no food) until they learn their lesson.
Anyway, all I wanted to say was that the dark days are behind me, peace is restored once more and I may return to my quiet introspection and intellectual pursuits.

Friday, July 19, 2002

Traumatised By Children

To my great horror, three small children seem to have moved into my neighbourhood. Not only into my neighbourhood but into one of the apartment blocks where I live.
Last weekend as I was reading a book (one of the very few things in life that I really enjoy; one of my too few means of escape from this shitty world), I was assaulted by the ridiculously high pitched voices of small children playing hide-and-seek.
These weren't just ordinary little kids - there were two girls and a boy, the boy's voice was unlike any other I had ever heard in my life. He was SUPER loud, like he had a megaphone lodged in his throat. And the only way I can put it, is that he sounded like a tiny version of a very flamboyant, mincing homosexual. Did I mention how loud he was? Well, brother was he loud. That shrieking, faggoty little voice caused me intense discomfort, let me tell you.
He was playing with what I guessed to be his sister and his sister's friend. You could tell that one of the girls was his sister because she was just as loud, but not faggoty sounding. The other girl I could barely hear.
So it was this little brother-sister duo, come to make my life a misery, and my weekend a very traumatic, disappointing one.
Anyway, I figured that they must have come for the day or something. They would leave soon, and peace and sanity would be restored. How wrong I was! The next day they were there again! This miniature, homosexual foghorn and his sister. It was beyond belief.
All week they are there. Every time I get home I'm a trembling, nervous wreck, because I know I'm going to hear those voices any minute. As if work isn't demanding and nerve-shredding enough - now the sanctuary of my tiny apartment has been taken from me.
Well, we are in the middle of school holidays at the moment, so I can only hope they will go when the holidays are over. If that doesn't happen, and they stay, I fear for my sanity.
As if I'm not just barely managing to hold onto that as it is.

Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Wanked Over To The Emergency Lane

While flipping through a bunch of different folks' Blogs yesterday afternoon, really wading through them, depressed and horrified to find so much lame crapola there, a FUNNY one popped out of the sad bunch. Titled BRING THE HATE, it's written by an Asian-American kid (I figure he's a kid, he goes to school, although he writes about working in the Summer) called Gordon Cheng. He calls anybody who pisses him off "fag" and writes stuff like: "He got wanked over to the emergency lane... f'ing moron, you got wanked. step down or die... aint' gonna happen you inferior white bitch" and on and on. He's obsessed with the latest technology, which the vast majority of the little brats seem to be these days, but this little brat made me laugh.
This world is full to exploding with little shits who write what are commonly known as "rants" - thank Christ that once in a while you stumble across one of the little bastards who is genuinely amusing.
Go to nowanking.blogspot.com to RECEIVE THE HATE.

Tuesday, July 16, 2002

Be Calm, My Pain...

Be calm, my pain and venture to be still
You clamoured for the Night; it falls; is here;
The city shrouds itself in blackest chill,
Brings peace to some, to others fear.

'Neath pleasure's lash, the grim high executioner,
Mortal souls, that vile and worthless throng,
Reap grim remorse amidst the abject ceremony,
Pain, take my hand and let us now along...
- Baudelaire

Monday, July 15, 2002

Stratu: Weekend Glo-Stick Salesman

Another weekend down the toilet, so to speak. Now, you may be curious as to what Stratu gets up to on his weekends. Well sometimes, he sells 'glo-stix' to kids at big rave parties, like he did on Saturday night.

See, my brother is a techno DJ here in Sydney and he and his friends put on rave parties. They need somebody trustworthy to work at the glo-stix stall, and since I don't make much money at my regular job, it is in my best interests to moonlight now and then for extra clams.

So Saturday night Mikel (my brother) drove me out to the Super Dome at Homebush Bay and from 9.30 pm to 3.30 am I worked my arse off, hustling glo products to kids half my age.

Most of the kids I deal with are OK. Well mannered, polite, friendly, and selling them their glo-stix for the evening is a pleasure. What drives me bananas are the rude, obnoxious little brats, and believe me, out of a crowd of 7500, there's more than enough of that sort to really take the glamour out of the glo-stick selling business.

You get kids who come up and simply point at whatever colour they want. I guess to them I am below having to actually talk to. Couldn't a monkey do this job? That's probably what they think. Then there are others who ask for a free one. "Aw come on! just one!" with a cheeky grin. "Run along you little scamp," I say, grandfatherly. Then one kid demands his money back because his glo-stick doesn't seem to be as bright as the one in the little electric display box. He looks like he's going to hit me. I feel sick. I don't wanna be here, why is this horrible kid talking to me? I wish he would disappear. I don't give him his money back. I win. Finally he walks away without any violence erupting. Phew. Then, a girl, hysterically yelling at me because there are no FAT glo-stix left; only THIN ones, and I have made the mistake of selling her THIN ones. She's so loud and upset I picture her in a straitjacket. Is this really happening? It doesn't make sense.

The problem is, all I notice are the little turds; the worst ones, the ones that make me so goddamn frustrated and mad it feels like my head is spinning, I may black out. I wish I would - then the first aid guys would have to take me out on a stretcher, and maybe I'd have to be sent home. That would be great. But it never happens, and there's hours of this torment to go.

When that time finally comes, I feel dirty, and getting the hell out of there, back on the road home at 4.00 in the morning, I can breathe again. I got the money, that's all that counts. I made it through another night selling goddamn glo-sticks to a stadium full of kids I wound up hating, barely disguising my loathing of them.

I don't know how long I can go on doing it. It's only every two months or so. One night out of two months. I don't really NEED to do it, but there's the money, see? It's pretty good money just for seven hours work. It's just that that work really makes me sick with disgust. I'm a whore. Yes, that must be it. A whore. Whore's do that kind of thing, don't they?

Friday, July 12, 2002

Recognised In A Bookstore

This really great thing happened to me recently. Well, it made me feel pretty great, anyway.
I was at the counter at Ariel paying for a book (Celine's 'Journey to the End of the Night" for those who MUST know, and I'm that sort, too), then the other girl, the one who wasn't dealing with my purchase, said to me: "You're the guy that does SICK PUPPY, aren't you?" I said: "Yes, I am!" She asked how it was going, I told her that I'd just finished SP#13, and about launching a new anthology, and that I thought my idea of finishing with #13 was a fine idea indeed, and that from now on each series I publish will be 13-issues long. (Perhaps, in fact, I went on and on like an idiot. A depressing thought...)
Anyway, that was that. I said: "Bye!"; she said: "Bye!"; both smiling away. She had short, dark, 'modern' hairstyle and those college-type glasses those hip young girls wear these days. Cute; bookish and cute.
Well, I walked outta there feeling considerably taller than when I walked in, that's for sure. I felt quite big and powerful walking home - the underground publisher who gets recognised in hip Sydney bookstores!

Scorpion Smoking

New High
Scorpion-smoking is becoming popular in Quetta, Pakistan. Users dry the scorpion's stingers, grind them, light the powder, and suck in the smoke. "When I smoke scorpion," said Ghulam Raza, "then heroin is like nothing to me." Smokers hang out at a local cemetary, where outsiders will not bother them.
Fortean Times June 2002 FT159

A Place to Wizz

I was in an enormous building (auditorium? shopping mall?) I really had to take a wizz but the only toilets was this huge room; everybody sitting around in circles. It was like a coffee house. Everybody there sat sort of propped up, half standing. There were women and children there, too. I tried to find a quiet part but it was so packed, I couldn't do it. I walked right out the back where it was not so crowded. There was a gutter and I walked along and saw a huge breast in there, a torpedo-like monstrosity with stretchmarks. It was right there in the gutter by itself yet it didn't strike me as unusual, it actually turned me on. But I kept on walking around, looking for a place to wizz. I found a paper, The New York Times Review of Books. I flipped through it, keeping some sections, one with photos of monkeys having what appeared to be homo sex, another part some writing by zine guy Jeff Levine. Well, I then walked back to the huge breast. I wanted to take a photo of it but didn't have my camera with me. I sat down near it to wizz, holding the paper up to my left so some people nearby wouldn't see. At this time it started raining. The people were too close, I had to move on.